Hi all! My name is Eleanor and I'm the Cardiff School of Education and Social Policy Representative for this academic year. I can't believe we are already nearly a month into the academic year, and that means I am a month into this role!
Our first week was a full-on week of training about the Students Union and our roles. We started with a classic Centro breakfast where I was able to meet the rest of the School Rep and Part time Officer team. We hit the ground running and laid out our own goals for the academic year and how we were going to achieve them. It was interesting to learn everyone else’s goals for the year and their plans for events. A few of us had the same priorities as each other, so we were able to immediately collaborate on campaigns or issues. Tuesday brought a day of training on SU policies, such a GDPR and we were able to meet more of the Students' Union staff. We ended the long day with a fab team dinner In Cosy Club.
Wednesday was my personal favourite day of the whole training week. We were able to speak to Brad Woolridge about the Student Wellbeing Project and the research he is currently undertaking. For the remainder of the morning we had a professional conduct and assertiveness workshop with Sally Strong. I didn't know we could book onto these for free through the SU as students, I really recommend them and I will be booking onto more before I graduate! That afternoon we had a group team building trip the Adventure Rooms Cardiff, a set of escape rooms near Cyncoed campus. It was such a fun afternoon where our competitive sides came out and we really got to know each other.
Our penultimate day of training came on the Thursday where we attended the Quality Enhancement conference on the Llandaff campus. I found this day so interesting as an CSESP student, as there were talks from people from all over the University about how we can improve our practice at Cardiff Met and beyond. It also gave the School Reps and Part Time Officers a chance to ask University staff their opinion and gain feedback on our plans that we had developed earlier in the week, and allowed us to connect with staff members through the University. On Friday we tied up all of the loose ends of the week and questions about Freshers’ Fayre and MetFest and had another team outing, this time to Bingo Lingo, which was a really fun end to the week.
The following Monday meant it was the start of Freshers' Week! Notoriously the busiest week of the year for the SU and it was a week I'll never forget. On Monday and Tuesday I was busy delivering introduction talks to L4 CSESP students about the Students' Union and how we can help them. Freshers week is always one of my favourite weeks of the year as the energy on campus is incredible.
The Wednesday was one of my favourite days so far of this role - Freshers Fayre! I spent the day in NIAC and was able to meet so many students which was brilliant. Mark, Amy, Mona and I were roped on stage a few times with the ACS and Bingo Lingo!. It was a brilliant day and I always love it as it really does showcase the best of Cardiff Met and sets the tone for the year ahead.
The following day we were kindly invited to a beautiful dinner at Ilora Finlay's lovely home. Ilora is the chair of the governors for the University and it was an evening I won’t forget quickly! After dinner, Delphi and Bella even showcased their Piano skills alongside Ilora's husband.
The final day of that week was MetFest, which was a much more relaxed day than Freshers Fayre as we were there as SU ambassadors. I was able to meet a lot more of the Llandaff campus-based students which was lovely as I’m usually based on Cyncoed campus. It was a full day of fun as we started the day with the fairground ride and ended it with Mamma Mia and plenty of Dominos pizza! I particularly enjoyed the Vintage Kilo Sale and the CSAD silent disco.
The 23rd of September not only meant the start of my third year, but it also meant the start of rep recruitment! Since lectures have started, I have had the opportunity to pop into plenty of Level 4,5,6 and 7 lectures and I’ve also been able to meet with students, key members of University staff and lecturers to ensure student voice is heard within our school.
Overall, it’s been a brilliant, and busy, first month in the School Rep role and I am really looking forward to the year ahead.